book review, horror, thriller

New Release: Whitesands by Johann Thorsson

The blog takeover continues! Today is launch day for Whitesands, so read on to find out more about the book, the author, and to read my review.

About the book


Detective John Dark’s daughter has been missing for two years. In his frantic and unfruitful search for her two years ago, John Dark overreached and was reprimanded and demoted.

Now suddenly back into the homicide department, Dark is put on a chilling case – a man who killed his wife in their locked house and then dressed the body up to resemble a deer, but claims to remember none of it. A few days later an impossibly similar case crops up connecting the suspects to a prep school and a thirty year old missing persons’ case. 

Just as he is getting back into his old groove, a new lead in his daughter’s disappearance pops up and threatens to derail his career again.

Time is running out and John Dark needs to solve the case before more people are killed, and while there is still hope to find his daughter.

In the style of True Detective and Silence of the Lambs, WHITESANDS is a thrilling supernatural crime novel.

My review

Detective John Dark’s teenage daughter has been missing for two years, but he has never stopped looking for her.

When a series of brutal murders appear to be bizarrely linked, John makes an intuitive leap.

Could a man named Daniel Hope help John solve the case, and find his daughter?

John’s search for his daughter drew me into the book from the first page. It made him immediately likable and relatable, and set up a heartbreaking conflict that I wanted to see resolved.

While I love John, his family and his detective partner, Daniel Hope is my favorite character. His schizophrenia is realistically presented, how others treat him is tragically true, and I love his role in the novel. I wish he had been in it more.

The murders John must investigate are deliciously dark. Described with striking visuals, the staging of the victims stays with you long after you’ve finished reading. I love the mix of folklore, serial killer stories and the paranormal that this thriller evokes, and I found the revelation of the mystery devastating.

My only nitpick is with some of the dialogue between the characters when discussing racism. I love the diversity of the characters and that the author didn’t shy away from these issues, but some of the conversations seemed a little heavy handed in delivery and lacked the depth of the rest of the novel.

I found this a gripping and emotional read and I hope it is the first of many John Dark novels.

I award Whitesands

Whitesands is available for $5.51 ebook on Amazon.

Thank you to the author and the publisher for providing me with an arc and I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.

About the author

Johann Thorsson is a writer of fiction with a supernatural slant, mainly short stories, mainly in English.

He was born in 1978 in a small town in Iceland (dark and cold, close to the sea). When he was nine he moved to Israel, and later to Croatia. He now resides in the Reykjavik area with his beautiful wife and two little kids.

His work has appeared in numerous publications, including Every Day Fiction, eFiction Magazine, eFiction Horror and Fireside Fiction.

Most recently, a story of his was selected for in the forthcoming anthology Apex Book of World SF 4 and Garden of Fiends

His favorite books are 1984, Flowers for Algernon, I am Legend, The Things They Carried and Neil Gaiman’s Sandman graphic novels. Oh, and Michael Ondaatje’s The English Patient. Daniel Woodrell’s Winter’s Bone. Romeo and Juliet. (This could go on for a while).




Be sure to check out my interview with Johann Thorsson and his guest post about the five books that influenced Whitesands.

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